La presente informativa è resa, anche ai sensi dell’art. 13 del D. Lgs. 196/2003 “Codice in materia di protezione dei dati personali” (“Codice Privacy”) 
e degli artt. 13 e 14 del Regolamento (UE) 2016/679 (“GDPR”), a coloro che si collegano alla presente edizione online del giornale Tribuna Economica di proprietà di AFC Editore Soc. Coop. 

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The European Commission has issued guidance to help Member States protect agricultural land from threats such as excessive price speculation and ownership concentration. EU Member States have the right to restrict sales of farmland to preserve agricultural communities and promote sustainable agriculture. But in doing so they must comply with EU law, in particular rules on free movement of capital. In 2015, the Commission

launched infringement procedures against Member States that discriminate against investors from other EU countries and create disproportionate restrictions on cross-border investment. In Communication, the Commission provides indications to Member States on what they can do to regulate the sale of farmland, based on case law of the Court of Justice of the European Union.

Key features of Commission's guidance.  The Communication clarifies that Member State are competent to decide on measures to control sales of farmland. As clarified by the Court of Justice of the European Union, some restrictions may be acceptable under certain conditions: prior authorisations from national authorities for the acquisition of land; limits on the size of the land to be acquired; pre-emption rights allowing certain categories of buyers to purchase farmland before it is sold to others. Buyers benefitting from these rights may include tenant farmers, neighbours, co-owners, and the State; State price intervention.

 

However, EU law does not allow discriminatory restrictions such as general residence requirements as preconditions for the acquisition of land. Disproportionate restrictions on cross-border investment are also unlawful. Based on case law, it is in particular disproportionate to: Impose self-farming obligations; Prohibit companies from buying land; Require qualifications in farming as pre-conditions for buying land.